Stay Up-To-Date with All The Office 365 Changes For 2019
If you are an Office 365 business subscriber, some of the changes rolled out by Microsoft this year may affect business operations. New product updates and features are constantly being rolled out, impacting users, support and your environment. Stay on top of Office 365 business changes in your organization by reviewing some of the major updates below.
Main Office 365 Updates
64-Bit Office Installs
Moving forward, all new Office ProPlus installations (standard fare for Office 365 business subscriptions) and new Office 2019 installations will be 64-bit by default. This change could affect organizations using add-ins that are 32-bit only, causing issues with incompatibility and missing content. Updating documentation to switch from 64-bit back to 32-bit may be necessary if your users require 32-bit plugins (add-ins).
Users running the 64-bit version of office will benefit from better performance for memory-intensive options because it will handle large amounts of RAM more effectively than a 32-bit system. If an enterprise is using large data sets like complex Excel workbooks with pivot tables and external databases, the 64-bit install will provide improved performance over 32-bit. It is possible to run both installations simultaneously. Microsoft provides guidelines for this in their support article, here.
Other Office 365 Changes Coming Soon
Beginning in January of 2019, Office 365 is blocking activation of Flash, Shockwave and Silverlight controls on its system. This is primarily due to low observed demand and use of these platforms as well as the upcoming end of support for Flash and Silverlight.
Speaking of support, Office 365 will also drop support for MacOS X 10.10 and 10.11, Tripe Data Encryption (3DES) in favor of Transport Layer Security (TLC), and third-party (non-Microsoft) audio conferencing services for Skype.
Yammer, Microsoft’s enterprise social networking service, will now require Azure Active Directory credentials rather than Yammer legacy credentials. This won’t require any AD licenses but admins can now manage Yammer credentials through Azure.
Microsoft Teams Now a Default Install on Office 365 Business
Microsoft Teams, the group chat software, is now included by default on Office 365 installs. According to Kurt Mackie of RCPMag, these installs include a 1-year free trial of Teams. IT Managers need to be aware of these installations because any end user in an organization can trigger the free Teams Commercial Trial Offer. To block Teams, IT managers must remove end-user privileges from installing apps and service from Microsoft. This is an effort to slowly move organizations from Skype for Business to Microsoft Teams. Another Office 365 change your users will notice are automatic notices, prompting users to make the move from Skype to Teams. Tenants are selected as part of the automated upgrade process and will receive notifications through the Office 365 Message center and via email. It’s important to manage this change actively and speak with a Microsoft partner if additional support is needed.
Office 365’s OneDrive Becoming the Default Save Location
Starting in February, Office 365 will push updates to core applications to make OneDrive the default Save location.
“To protect against device loss or damage and to provide anywhere access to files, we recommend storing them in Office 365,” an Office Apps Team post to the Office 365 Blog explains. “We are announcing a new capability that makes it easier for you to create and save your Word, Excel, or PowerPoint document directly to the cloud.”
Any time a user is saving a file, a new dialog box will appear defaulting to the OneDrive save location, or, for Office 365 Commercial, to SharePoint Online. This shows Microsoft’s dedication to providing more access to the cloud, improving security, collaboration and ease of use. Don’t worry, however, this is configurable in the options menu. This way, users can choose to save locally as the default location.
Using a Managed Service Provider to Navigate Important Office 365 Changes and Updates
As a member of the Microsoft Cloud Solution Provider (CSP) Program, Pointivity is your one-stop smart resource for successful Office 365 business change management. Whether a small or medium sized business or a large enterprise, we have managed services customized specifically for your business need. If your enterprise requires an Office 365 migration, support, monitoring and maintenance, contact us today to discuss your options